A Baltimore woman has recently filed a lawsuit against Baltimore officials and city contractors after an unfortunate event left her with a terrible mess. In November 2014, the plaintiff, Angela Wright, was in her bathroom when her toilet suddenly, and without any warning, exploded. Not only did the explosion knock Ms. Wright to the ground, injuring her, but her toilet continued to spew out sewage, covering her in fecal matter. This undoubtedly traumatic and tremendously unpleasant experience led her to pursue legal action against the city and its contractors for the physical and psychological damages suffered.
The lawsuit alleges that the cause of the explosion was city contractors making use of high-pressure hoses to clean out the sewage line in Wright’s neighborhood. Wright herself was on the toilet when the lines backed up and caused her toilet to explode. This explosion threw her to the ground, and her toilet began spraying sewage everywhere. Wright attempted to notify the contractors of what happened, who claimed no responsibility, forcing her to handle the clean up of her sewage covered bathroom by herself. The lawsuit alleges that the full cost of repairs and replacement to the bathroom alone amounts to about $14,000.
Since the incident, the bathroom itself has been cleaned, but the appliances and functions are still not in working order. The lawsuit also calls for the recovery of $3,300 in medical damages, in addition to $75,000 from each defendant, ultimately totaling at $225,000 in total compensation. The total amount aims to compensate her for the repairs necessary to the bathroom, her injuries, and the psychological trauma of what happened.
The lawsuit names a number of defendants, including the Baltimore Mayor and City Council, as well as the two contracted companies used to clean up the sewer lines. The claim relies on the legal doctrine of negligence. The lawsuit claims that the government was negligent in their use of outside contractors. It also alleges that the contractors were negligent in their actions while cleaning the sewage pipes.
If you or a loved one has been injured and the party at fault is the government, there are two important things to be aware of. First, it is crucial that you do not wait to file a claim because you may lose your right to sue if you do. Second, the procedure for pursuing a claim is different from pursuing a claim against a private person or private company. There are administrative steps you must take before you can even file a lawsuit, typically this will involve giving the government entity responsible for your injuries notice that you have a claim. The deadline to give notice is usually much shorter than the statute of limitations for the claim. If you miss the deadline and fail to file an administrative claim on time, you can be barred from recovering any compensation for your injuries. If you have been injured, contact the experienced team at Gilman & Bedigian today.